A tad premature, I know. But I woke up in a graphic design-y mood this morning (and not so much like working on a comic), and decided that any work done on Delia Awesome is better than none.
Hopefully all of you have noticed the design is identical to Delia’s t-shirt as it appears on the website’s banner. The white flower on the red field is, for all intents and purposes, her insignia.
While I reject the idea of Delia being a costumed superheroine, I recognize – as calculating as it may seem – that symbols are potent marketing tools. And I want Delia Awesome to be easily recognized. So while the Delia found in every story may wear whatever odds and ends she pulls from her wardrobe, the woman seen on covers, advertisements, posters, and so on will always be sporting the same red shirt.
And before I’m labeled a wannabe sellout out of hand, consider that while Maggie and Hopey may be two of the most iconic characters in the history of alternative comics, they’re virtually unidentifiable out of any familiar context. Hell, Superman and Batman could appear against a solid white background and still be identified by a kid living on the Mongol Steppe, while their alter egos of Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne could be mistaken for any handsome, square-jawed cartoon pilot.
It’s the symbols, the contours and colors of the costume, that identify the character out of context.
And while her emblem isn’t something I just pulled out of my ass, the design appeared so naturally that it occasionally feels that way. I’m not accustomed to these sorts of things coming easily.
I always felt the name Delia had a very floral quality, so before I knew anything else about her device, I knew it would be a flower. The white, black, and red color scheme stems from design choices for the entire comic, which I wanted to be at least partially evocative of old punk flyers. Similarly, I wanted the look of the flower itself to be crude – like something printed on a non-commercial press. Finally, the shape and arrangement of the petals needed to be vaguely reminiscent of a radioactive symbol – denoting the hazardous, scientific, otherworldly nature of Delia’s powers. Incidentally, the trefoil references will have greater significance in what’s presently planned as a third volume of Delia Awesome – assuming it ever gets that far.
Man, it seems like such an awful lot to say about such a simple image. And for someone with such finely tuned bullshit detection as myself, the fact that this explanation isn’t setting off alarms in my own head makes me think I’m on the right track.